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Grateful Dead Live at The Spectrum on 1985-04-08

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Grateful Dead Live at The Spectrum on 1985-04-08

Topics Live concert

Midnight Hour-> Walkin' The Dog-> Big Boss Man, Me & My Uncle-> Cumberland Blues, Down In The Bottom-> I Ain't Superstitous, Althea, Tons Of Steel-> Supplication-> Might As Well Revolution, Hell In A Bucket-> Touch Of Gray, Estimated Prophet-> Eyes Of The World-> Drums-> Goin' Down The Road Feelin' Bad-> Stella Blue-> Around & Around-> Turn On Your Love Light, E: Brokedown Palace

Collection GratefulDead
Band/Artist Grateful Dead
Venue The Spectrum
Location Philadelphia, PA



(Healy Mix)SBD>MC>PCM>BETA>DAT>CDR; Seeded to etree by Tim W


Reviewer: dupree413 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 12, 2011
Subject: Great First Set
First sets - as time passed through their improvosational career - seemed shorter and (I have no idea if this accurate) more of a "filler" for the Boys.

This set is an exception. In fact, I would agree with some that have suggested that getting the first set for this show would be more benefitial to your collection than the second set from this night.

DOn't get me wrong. The post-space is very good. Even a rousing lovelight caps things off quite well.

But the first set Midnight Hour>Walking the Dog>Big Boss Man is extremely rare and well executed. Jerry's voice is not - in my opinion great during these numbers. But he makes up for it with the gusto he puts behind his delivery.

Also, I believe Bottom>Superstitious was a great change for Bob in his blues repetoire. Check out the Hampton version 3/21/85 and the Nassau version 3/29/85 to see what I mean.

Four stars. The pre-drums was just a bit too sloppy to warrant a 5 star rating or a Vault Pick, again in my opinion.
Reviewer: corby112 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - July 31, 2010
Subject: The best night of this three show run.
Garcia's voice shows signs of great improvement, especially after that brutal showing on 4-6. This show starts off with a bang, a Midnight Hour>Walkin the Dog>Big Boss Man trifecta! The band is full of energya nd are clearly having fun. Also, the crowd is really into it and goes nuts for the song selection. All three of these songs are played with gusto and the Boss Man features a nice jam. Jerry in particular is on fire for this threesome. Bobby keeps things going with a brief yet energetic Uncle that segues into Cumberland! This duo is excellent and the transition is flawless. The Cumberland features a nice jam with frenetic group improv. The Bottom/Superstitious that follows is brief and uneventful, one of the only low points of the first set. Jerry delivers a pretty Althea with minimal flubs and decent vocals. This version is laid back but features some nice leads from Garcia. Next is a great version of Tons of Steel(if there is such a thing). Usually I despise this song but Brent doesn't ham it up too much and the whole band is on fire! Lots of energy and great soloing. This segues into an intense Supplication jam that again has the band firing on all cylinders. It's rare to hear a jam like this in a first set but this isn't an ordinary night. The Might as Well that closes the set is a disappointment to an otherwise incredible start.

The second set features some nice playing but unfortunately the energy from the first set doesn't hold throughout. A clunky Revolution starts things out and while it's not tightly played, they are at least experimenting with different songs this night and it sounds like blast! The Bucket that follows starts off rough but uickly picks up steam and has some intensity during the solos. A mediocre Touch is pretty uneventful but is followed by an excellent Estimated. Bobby is howling and Jerry's first solo is soaring. Also, the outro jam is lengthy with a spacey feel to it. This transitions into a rapid paced Eyes that seems a bit rushed into. Jerry's voice is staring to weaken at this point as well so they fade into Drums. The GDTR has a weird intro but Jerry does some nice picking before transitioning into a soulful Stella Blue. Garcia's vocals are very rough, especially during the key segments but it's a passable version. They blaze through Around and Around before ending the show with a decent Lovelight that closes the show on a high note.
Reviewer: deadheaddave - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 16, 2010
Subject: LickthisrimJ
Show is smoking. Was there. Don't listen to Mutt and Jeff (aka Jrimlik and Sbrew) below. Great show, great energy, killer set list. Period.
Reviewer: JRimLik - favoritefavoritefavorite - May 8, 2010
Subject: Nope, wrong
Easily a below average show. I saw 27 ahows in 1985 and the only two that s*cked were this one and, even worse - 4.6. 1985 was in general a vey consistent and well-played year. This first set is good and has it's moments but the show really slides from the supplication jam-forward. And it is not the vocals - it is the whole band, just feeble executuion on several levels. 4.7, Jerry sounded much better, and the band was very much on. Stream 4.7 people - Shakedown, Dew, Smokestack and the sweet She Belongs to Me, Do it in the Road, Lesh vocals all over the place. Now THAT was a classic show
Reviewer: sbrew - favoritefavorite - April 12, 2010
Subject: honestly there are much better shows
Reviews are contagious and sadly unreliable. This show starts off with some nice moments but just degenerates into sloppiness and sludge.

It's just sad after hearing a show like this, to see all these rave reviews about how the band was "ON" and how Revolution was a "masterpiece". Wow, it honestly was a mess.

While the show certainly has moments (mostly in set 1), it's just dragging itself the rest of the way, sloppy, and with Garcia gasping for air.

Anyone uninitiated, reading these delusional reviews, then listening for him/herself will just have more fodder to claim that the GD are a joke and that the fans are clueless. Neither is true, though these reviews would lead you to think otherwise.

The band has put out a slew of wonderful shows and there are so many better ones than this (and better ones from this tour, too). This show may be worth hearing for some, but why do we keep claiming rave reviews for moments of total wreck? Emperor's New Clothes Syndrome perhaps?
Reviewer: darkstarcrashes_79 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - January 29, 2010
Subject: below average show
i think the first set smokes the second not even a fizzle i was at this show too all in all decent but nowhere close to Merriweather or alot of others from 85
Reviewer: richmond randy - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - July 8, 2009
Subject: Really?
If this is a below average show then I'm a monkey's uncle! I was there and this show kicked solid. So what if Jerry's voice was ragged, did you hear the Dew from the night before, same voice, all time classic version. Everyone I know listened to these shows over and over. The Revolution might not be perfect, and so sorry if these aren't your favorite tunes, but most everyone else at these Philly shows went home or on to Irvine with a great big satisfied grin on their faces!
Reviewer: Sedula - favoritefavoritefavorite - June 18, 2009
Subject: Great Show??
I was at this show (and most of this tour) and while the opening three tunes (and the first set) were fine there is nothing special about the 2nd set (except for Revolution). Besides the Revolution it was a "standard" set and as usual I was dissappointed since they started off so hot.
Reviewer: Alex, Geddy, Neil, Jerry, Bobby, Phil, Brent, Mickey, Billy - favoritefavoritefavorite - June 1, 2009
Subject: not exactly the best of '85
boys seem to be breaking in the eventual In The Dark stuff (Tons of Steel, Bucket, Touch)... nice to hear a little Supplication jam out of a Brent tune...

typical overjoyed Spectrum crowd but Jerry's clearly illin' on the vocals especially but like much of '85, his counterparts carry him through.

to each his/her own but some of these ratings are clearly the by-product of people being high on acid...
recording is ok, the playing is decent... 2.5 - 3.0 stars.
Reviewer: kingbiscuit11 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 15, 2008
Subject: bobby's intro into gdtrfb...
Chris J,

Yeah I had a super blast at this one too. i listened to that intro to gdtrfb and the chords bobbys playing could be the start of hard to handle, which indeed would have been most remarkable :)


Reviewer: human lava lamp - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - November 12, 2007
Subject: Bobby Falls Backwards During SSDD
Birthday show for me in 1985!!! Lots of fun -- BIG BOSS MAN (Trouble ahead...Jerry in Red)!!! Short first set, but Dead on fire throughout show. With regard to Bobby falling down during Estimated, I remember it happening during the SSDD the night before (Easter show - hot show (esp. 2nd Set).

Reviewer: Chris J. - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 1, 2006
Subject: GDTRFB or ???
This show was among probably the top 3 or so that I've seen between 1983 and roughly 1993, (the other notable one being 10-11-83, return of St. Stephen). But I have a question for anyone who's listened to this closely. Going into GDTRFB there was a little "battle" between Bobby and Jerry. I think Jerry was playing the GDTFB lick (and obviously won) but Bobby was playing a three-chord riff from something else. 20 years later, I still can't figure out what it was, and it still drives me nuts when I hear it. Had it been that "other" tune, I think this would rank as a top-10 show of all time. (In my little universe anyway!)
Reviewer: deadhead7824 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 28, 2006
Subject: Lovelight
One word to explain lovelight for the last 2 1/2 or so minutes: ON FIRE!!! Check this lovelight out!!
Reviewer: grapefruit ted - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - December 30, 2005
Subject: sweet stuff
awesome show,
Reviewer: grapefruit ted - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - December 30, 2005
Subject: sweet stuff
awesome show,
Reviewer: jhender501 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 20, 2005
Subject: Might as Well, Might as Well
Love this mix as well..a lot more fun, it Midnight a kid in the late 60s every garage band did that song..still love to hear it..walkin' the dog brings back some fun memories of an old friend..whole show is great..Althea is wonderful..Tons of the version here, yes, HIB and TOG don't seem to fit in the second set but good to hear 'em.

Reviewer: Grapefruit Fred - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - March 31, 2005
Subject: 4/8/85 WOW!!!!!!
I love the mix on this one. Sounds like alot of Aud for a SBD but that just gives a clue to the mood that night. This show just ROCKS from beginning to end! Due to festival seating for this run, I was able to get front row between Jerry and Brent. I think that may be one reason I so fondly and vividly remember this show. I remember this as a very boisterous show, with band and fans alike rockin' out and having a great time. The tone of the show, the unique set list and the quality of this recording make this show well worth listening to again and again.

P.S. Does anybody else who was there remember Bobby fallin' on his ass during Estimated?
Reviewer: jamall - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 13, 2005
Subject: Never underestimate
the Grateful Dead.

I was fortunate enough to have been into the dead for several years by this point, and knew the East Coast spring tours were stuff of legend.
The band was coming off of one of their most energetic and brillantly played tours in years. Certainly there were flubs and parts of sets that some considered sub-par.
But if you listen to the shows from Springfield on (not discounting Hampton) I think you'll be impressed. Revived songs, well-chosen covers and intense playing of GD "standards" can be found a-plenty.
Now, there have been quesions about this being an audience tape or Healy's input...I don't know the techincal answers to that.
We all wanted "boards" back then (as we still do in many cases). But this concert is a classic example of the audience and the band "feeding" off of each other. Yeah, Jerry was ragged in some respects...but his voice lent itself to "Walkin' ..." and "Big Boss Man".
"Bottom>Superstious" - which warmly welcomed for both a change from "C.C. Rider" and "Rooster" - cooks!!

I'm normally a second-set head...but this is a must have first set!!!

The second set suffers from the first 3 songs...whatever the opinion is on covering "Revolution" , it clearly was not meant as a springboard to other songs. Which would have been okay, but it was followed by "Hell in a Bucket" and "Touch"...songs (in my opinion) that belong in the first set.
For me the "Esimated>Eyes" and "GDTRFB" were the gems of set two.

Reviewer: Dylanstubs - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - November 12, 2004
Subject: Sounds damn good to me
Purported to be a Healy audience mix recording, but a little heavier on the aud than other such mixes I've heard. Kind of light on the bass, but still a super clean recording of an amazing show.
Reviewer: ccrawford33 - favoritefavorite - October 10, 2004
Subject: 4-8-85
THIS IS AN AUDIENCE TAPE. Not the best version of this show. Plus Jerry's voice was pretty rough that night.

But go with the other Soundboard source on the archive. It's better than this one.
Reviewer: Joe Shlobotnick - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 7, 2004
Subject: SBD
I don't think this is a board, but it still sounds great. Nice show!
Reviewer: sid weiss - favoritefavorite - September 18, 2004
Subject: sound quality is just ok
instramentally the sound quality is great, but the vocals soudn quality is weak
Reviewer: ride_her_like_a_surfer - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 11, 2004
Subject: Jerry's Voice....
The reason Jerry's voice sounds so shot is cause these were the last shows of the tour and he was battling a cold,probably had some strep throat to boot.
Reviewer: The Bopper - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - August 12, 2004
Subject: FYI
Until they have video on Archive, you can download video format of first set if you have the Furthur software and you find someone offering it. I would be sharing it myself but had to remove because not enough space on my drive.

Walkin' the dog is treat to watch
Reviewer: Grateful Steve - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - August 12, 2004
Subject: Jerry's Voice
I'm not an expert on the after 1980 dead....but Jerry's voice sounds shot like it never did in the 70's.

If you like the dead of 1970 - 1974 and even as late as 1977 - this show will not convert you to the 80's although the playing is fine.

I'm giving it 5* in deference to the afficionados of the 80's and those that went before. Maybe I'll grow into it.
Reviewer: sharkman - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - July 29, 2004
Subject: best show I ever saw peroid.
200+ dead shows from 79-94 this "THE" show. If you never gave it a listen try it you will be very happy. The 1st set is on FIRE!!!!!!!!!
Reviewer: norvarchivist - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 9, 2004
Subject: My first show....
.....I was sitting in my dorm room, and WMMR in Philly was broadcasting from the Spectrum, on the 3rd of 3 nights...My friend and I said what the hell, jumped on the subway and was at the Spectrum in 20 mins or amazing life was never the same again :)
Reviewer: JamBandJunky - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 17, 2004
Subject: High Energy
I've had several incarnations of this incredible show over the last fifteen years, including a vinyl bootleg and analog cassettes, which I listened to so much that they wore out. A word for all you'85 Dead sceptics out there; If you haven't heard this show, give it a try. This recording reflects well the energy of the audience. The delay on Jerry's voice during Midnight Hour makes my neck hairs stand up every time. Among the thousands of hours of live music in my collection, this show is outstanding!
Reviewer: OldHeadZimmer - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 10, 2004
Subject: Just a Just a Just a Walkin'
People were talking about and listening to this show for years because of the triple threat opener. Seeing Jerry do a small step and kick in sinc with the "Just a Just a Just a walkin'" - Completely "Priceless"
Reviewer: OldHeadZimmer - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 10, 2004
Subject: Just a Just a Just a Walkin'
People were talking about and listening to this show for years because of the triple threat opener. Seeing Jerry do a small step and kick in sinc with the "Just a Just a Just a walkin'" - Completely "Priceless"
Reviewer: samson - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 9, 2004
Subject: Incredible
This show is just incredible! The band was definately ON this night. This actually sounds more like an audience recording. The fact that you can hear the crowd feeding off the band makes this one an exciting and incredible addition to your collection. Personally I think it is much better than the other SBD out there. This one reminds me of the times I had to hear the band from the lot. It is one of those shows where if you listen to it outside the breeze can catch it and swirl it around and turn it into magic for the ears.
Reviewer: Hokker - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 8, 2004
Subject: climax
This was a perfect climax to the three nite stand. The opening of set 1 was worth the price of a ticket. The second set was just as good as the first. If you don't have this show - GET IT! This is a must have and if you don't have it please take my word for it and at least give it a listen and you too will be won over. I still to this day can't believe I was there to witness it firsthand.
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on 3/31/2004
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